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Kirkwood poetry award winner announced

RELEASED: May 18, 2011

EAU CLAIRE — The recipient of the 2010-11 Kirkwood Award from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Foundation has been announced.

Dr. Jack Bushnell, professor and chair of the English department, said this year's winner, senior English major Jillian Phillips, Boyd, did "a lovely job with her sonnet" and hopes the award will inspire her to keep writing.

"Frankly, the world needs more poets," Bushnell said.

"It's our only award specifically dedicated to recognizing creative merit," Bushnell said of the Kirkwood award. "Being a writer is a lonely enterprise; getting recognition is a reassurance that creative work does not exist in a vacuum, that someone out there is paying attention."

Richard Kirkwood taught English and poetry at UW-Eau Claire for 34 years. He was a widely respected poet and teacher of poetry. While he preferred classic works rendered in heroic couplets, he often asked his students to compose verses in such traditional, challenging forms as villanelles and sestinas. Kirkwood, an Eau Claire resident, retired in 1998.

The scholarship is awarded annually to a student deemed to have written the most outstanding poem submitted in traditional poetic form for that academic year. All English majors and minors and any UW-Eau Claire student who has submitted work to or been published in NOTA, UW-Eau Claire's literary and arts publication, may submit a poem in traditional poetic form for consideration for the Kirkwood Award.

For more information about this and other scholarships available through the UW-Eau Claire Foundation, visit the Foundation website or contact Kimera Way, Foundation executive director, at waykk@uwec.edu.

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MC/RD/DW

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